Tamerlane (oz14714)


Tamerlane (oz14714) by Dave Clarkson 1978 - plan thumbnail

About this Plan

Tamerlane. Control line combat model.

Quote: "Why not try combat FAI style? Maybe you'll like it! Here's a well-tested weapon for international duels.

Why fly FAI Combat at all? In Europe, the answer is obvious, since this is the only class of combat we have. But on the US side of the water, AMA 'Fast' and 'Slow' Combat already exist, so why complicate things with yet another class? Well, firstly FAI Combat is the International class. People all over the world - Europe, Asia, Africa, Australia fly it, so if you are doing the 'have toy, will travel' bit, like Charlie Johnson and Gary Frost have done from the US side, and Richard Wilkens from England, FAI Combat is the event Combat fliers do. Secondly, in 1978, the first official Combat World Championships will happen, and FAI Combat is the class involved. US fliers aren't going to pass up the chance to be the world champions, are they? Finally, I think the rules make FAI the purest Combat class of the lot.

Few will find much to argue about with my first two reasons, but maybe a bit more convincing is needed for the last one. The key things about FAI are that a spare model is allowed, and there is no 'kill'. A crash/mid-air/line tangle/kill does not terminate the match. So, unless you run out of models, the match goes on for the full 4 minutes allowed. Nearly all of the matches over here in England last the full 4 minutes and, because of the first-round looser's re-draw, every flier gets a minimum of two matches (equals 8 minutes of real combat) per contest. A bit more than in AMA 'Fast', I believe! Now that for 1976 onwards, the FAI has incorporated the British cut definition and the AMA-inspired safety arrangements into the FAI rules, the remaining deficiencies in the rules have been eliminated. For me, Combat is all about skill in piloting, not arguing; the FAI rules encourage flying.

Tamerlane is a typical product of the British evolutionary process. The British have been winning the Big Ones since FAI Combat started 20 years ago, mainly because our FM Combat scene is the hottest one in the world. Our models have evolved to be tough, easily built and repaired, and yet highly maneuverable.

In FAI, you get to do a lot of Combat, so the models have to survive a lot too; they have got to be tough. But no model can survive the ultimate crash or mid-air, so they have to be easily and rapidly built and repairable - don't want to spend all of our time building, do we? The trick is in making such a model highly maneuverable and this is where our British approach has produced the goodies.

A quick study of the plan will show that TAMERLANE has an almost ridiculously simple structure - a simplicity of structure allowed by the use of, probably to American eyes, a very crude airfoil. This airfoil type is employed just about universally throughout Europe, and there can be only one reason for that - it works. Did you see Richard Wilkens' models turn at your '75 Nats? Now tell me that the airfoil doesn't work!

The other thing you will notice is the size - almost as big as an AMA Combat model with over 50% of the total flying drag coming from the lines, a bit more wing area hardly touches the speed, but that bit more area sure pays off in the 'bends.'

Some models over here have strayed up to and past the 400 square inch mark, but you need a super motor to lug that lot around (we British didn't have super motors at the '75 European Championships, so our fliers had trouble getting at their opponents). Tamerlane is sort of medium sized, with 320 square inches..."

Direct submission to Outerzone.

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Tamerlane (oz14714) by Dave Clarkson 1978 - model pic

  • (oz14714)
    by Dave Clarkson
    from Model Builder
    October 1978 
    37in span
    IC C/L
    clean :)
    all formers complete :)
    got article :)
  • Submitted: 09/07/2023
    Filesize: 256KB
    Format: • PDFbitmap
    Credit*: MB2020
    Downloads: 246

Tamerlane (oz14714) by Dave Clarkson 1978 - pic 003.jpg

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User comments

I see, this is the collective noun for several identical models in a row, as in a Sentence of Judges or a Disworship of Scots. Here we have a Lane of Tamers. Tamer seems a fine name for a combat model, as are Harrier, Invader, Marauder, etc.
Miguel - 31/07/2023
incidentally this morning I saw on tv a documentary on Tamerlane.
Pit - 31/07/2023
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